Coach Self Press Conference Quotes

Oct. 30, 2006


Kansas Basketball Press Conference Quotes

Head Coach Bill Self

On the status of C.J. Giles:
“No decision has been made on C.J. I have not seen him since he went back home because of the death of a friend. We’ll visit sometime this week. My reports are limited, but I think he’s done some things that he certainly was told he needed to be doing. My focus is not on C.J. Giles. My focus is trying to get our team better and right now he’s not part of our team and he may never be a part of our team. I am not going to make a final decision until I have had a chance to visit with him and check some things out. I hope to have it come to a definite resolution here sometime soon.”

On the possibility of participating in scrimmages with other D-I programs:
“I think it would be great, but I don’t think that will happen at Kansas. Lew Perkins and his staff have worked too hard to raise money to lose an opportunity to have a home gate. That would be a large financial loss for the university. I can see why it could happen at a lot of places. However, one of the real advantages of having exhibition games is that it gets people to play under the lights in front of people. There are a lot of benefits both ways. The benefits of playing another college in a scrimmage situation is that you could play in the morning, break for lunch, play in the afternoon, break for dinner and play again at night. You could spend 20 minutes working on zone and there would be some serious advantages, but one thing you don’t get is that you’re not playing in a setting where the lights are on and people are in the stands. A lot of schools are doing it, but a lot of it depends on budget. “

On the status of Sasha Kaun:
“We had a rough day yesterday. Sasha hurt his right knee and partially tore his patella tendon. He will be out three-to-six weeks. We just found that out this morning. I think he just planted his leg wrong when he jumped. To be honest, we’re a little fortunate because thought yesterday it was worse than what it was. He won’t need surgery. It is not a rupture or torn ligament. He can’t do much immediately, but the rehab process won’t be known until we find out in a few days how the injury looks.”

On whether the team and staff are excited about Thursday:
“My excitement is a little tempered. I know we have a long ways to go before we’re ready to play, even on Thursday night. I am excited about the season and what’s going on, but certainly Sasha’s situation was a blow to us yesterday.”

On playing Washburn and Coach Bob Chipman:
“All our players know Bob well through the summer camps. He is a terrific coach who has been doing it for a long time and has won a lot of games. Last year, they struggled but they return the majority of their team. It should be a fun game. Two years ago, it was a nine-point game. It was four or five points late in the game and they had a shot, so I think that game helped us in a lot of ways.”

On the probability of playing small without Kaun:
“We’re going to have to play small. We are a tiny team all of a sudden. We have lost two 6’11” guys and suddenly, we’re small. We’ll have to play Darrell (Arthur)or Darnell (Jackson) at the five and probably move Julian to four. Matt Kleinmann will probably play some now and we could move Rodrick to the four and play real small. Those are the only guys left. We have gone from being a deep, long, athletic team to being, in the short term, a team that does not have much inside depth at all. We’re a pretty thin group right now.”

On concern over interior defense:
“That is the biggest concern of our team. We don’t guard very well inside. Sasha was our best low-post defender, so that is an issue.”

On the significance of playing the local teams, like Washburn and Emporia State:
“I think it means a lot to the respective institutions. I think that is one of the many things that Roy (Williams) did that was positive. He made a decision to play the Division II schools in the state and switch off every year. It is good for their budget and recruiting and it is good for us because we’ll draw more fans because of the interest on their side. We get a lot of interest from other Division II schools, but we like what we’re doing with the schools in our state.”

On the offensive and defensive improvements Darnell Jackson has made:
“I think he’s come a long ways offensively. Defensively, I cannot say that. He is a good shooter. Darnell can do a lot of good things. My biggest concern is rebounding the ball and having a low post presence on the defensive end, impacting the game by not giving up easy shots and contesting and altering shots. That is an area he has to get a lot better in.”

On what players have stood out thus far in practice:
“Russell Robinson, Mario Chalmers and Brandon Rush have all been pretty good and Sasha had been pretty good so far. Of our guys that returned and played a lot, those are the guys that stick out in my mind. From a newcomer standpoint, Darrell Arthur has had as good a camp as anybody. But I think Jeremy Case has gotten a lot better. Brady Morningstar has improved the last few days. Rodrick Stewart has played pretty well. Still, early in the season when we’re putting in new things, it’s hard for any one guy to look good. I don’t think we’ve put our guys in a position for one to just stand out. I think we have guys who play really well with the ball, but not so many that play well without the ball.”

On whether the exhibition games are big for the freshmen:
“I don’t necessarily think so. I think it’s big for them, but I also think it’s big for Jeremy Case and Rodrick Stewart. But also, Julian (Wright) needs to go out and play. All of these guys need to go out and play and have some success. These guys will be nervous on Thursday, and I’d be disappointed if they weren’t. I think the exhibition games are good for our entire team and our program. This is a good opportunity for us to do some good things as a team, regardless of what the score says or who you’re playing against.”

On whether Darrell Arthur is the ideal five:
“He’s not a five. He is a prototypical four, but because we’re so small, he’s needed. He’s determined a four or a five in people’s minds by who he guards and he’s not a five defensively. But he’s going to have to become that as long as we’re playing small.”

On the possibility of Brady Morningstar redshirting this season:
“I’d say there is a chance, but we’ll know more after the exhibition games. He’s played pretty well the last few days.”